Things weren’t looking good for the Rangers
Kiya had just beaten the rest of the Omega Rangers into submission and once they regrouped with the Earth Rangers, the former Omega Blue launched an attack with the admittedly cowardly, but immensely powerful Cavotus to keep them from disrupting her plans of creating a peaceful universe without Rangers altogether.
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #48
Writer: Ryan Parrott
Artist: Daniele Di Nicuolo
Colorist: Walter Baiamonte
This issue of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers excels in every category from characters to art to colors and lettering. This kind of top notch quality is what makes this book such a step up from the mega franchise that Power Rangers is on television and turns it into it’s own beast that shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s too good to be ignored.
This issue picks up soon afterwards and seems to be building towards a very climatic conclusion as another Ranger from the recent past makes their return in the nick of time just as Kiya seeks to be on the edge of victory after the Intergalactic Bounty Hunter, Dayne finds a portal to the realm of the Morphin Masters, the race of beings that served the Morphin Grid before the Rangers.
Ryan Parrott’s Writing Sings Out
Ryan Parrott has done an excellent job of weaving a rich tapestry. Creating an entirely new history and lore behind the Power Rangers with this mysterious race of powerful beings just in the periphery of their existence. At the same time, instead of completely focusing on Lord Zedd who would have been the main baddie at this time, he builds Kiya up as a powerful threat.
Kiya is one of the better things to come out of this run of Power Rangers as she serves as something of an antithesis to Ellarien, the Solar Ranger introduced in the Beyond the Grid arc of Parrott’s epic. Where Ellarien was initially a villainous character with a tragic past as a result of Drakkon’s destruction, she eventually found her own path of heroism through the Lost Rangers.
Kiya is a direct parallel in that she has her share of tragedy and was on her heroic path when we were first introduced to her, but as the story rolled on, we saw her tumble down into the darkness. She’s still heavily affected by the past and that’s what makes her such a compelling threat and tragic villain. Her goal of a peaceful Universe is admirable, but her methods are as evil as they come.
Rich and Vibrant Colours from Daniele di Nicuolo
As always, Daniele di Nicuolo shines in the art department with stellar colors from Walter Baiamonte and Katia Ranalli. Truly they were absolutely meant to draw Power Rangers together as di Nicuolo’s dynamic style meshes well with Baiamonte’s vibrant tones. Every action panel has a weight and intensity to them that makes readers feel like they’re in the book.
That’s one of di Nicuolo’s strengths, the impact and speed of actions such as when Tommy and Jason are sparring with each other for the first time since Jason revealed that he was the Omega Red Ranger. Jason’s anger at his defeat by Kiya manifests in a beautiful kick that decimates a tree, but Tommy’s passive aggressive anger at being left behind and lied to is shown by a flurry of kicks that leave mirages.
Arguably the best example of amazing art in this issue has to be the battle with the new Rangers, Aisha, Adam and Rocky, with Zack and Trini’s help against Cavotus. Baiamonte’s coloring of the asteroid field as a battle arena gives things a tinge of darkness as Cavotus stalks the Rangers like a horror movie villain. Though he’s the only thing glowing, his light betrays his motives.
Sticking to the shadows becomes the only way for the Rangers to survive as Cavotus more than proves himself a capable combatant while apologizing for everything he does. He could annihilate them with little effort, but his timid nature mostly prevents him from doing so outright, something that di Nicuolo conveys through excellent body language and facial expression.
Of course, the entire issue can’t be high action and intensity as this entire Power Rangers saga has shown us that the human moments are as needed as the heroism. Another area where Parrott shines is small moments like when Jason and Tommy scratch the surface of their fractured relationship or when Zack finally talks to his replacement in Adam, reassuring him of his rightful place as a Ranger.
These moments make the book worth reading and remind me of episodes of the Mighty Morphin show like “Gung-Ho” where Jason and Tommy have to work out their egos to finally be a cohesive unit as friends. They overcome their issues over leadership and martial arts skill to become friends, proving that Power Rangers is more than spandex costumes and campy action scenes.